This is my son’s GiddyFin’s birth story. I was 40w and 4d along. I happily waddled like a plump penguin in the Florida heat. That was really the most negative part, the Florida heat. Up until that point I was so incredibly thankful to be pregnant, that minor annoyances didn’t particularly bother me. Don’t worry, any woman who has been pregnant before, please don’t hate me yet. I gave birth to a spirited child. It was ultimately this experience that has lead me to branch out into birth photography, and seek a doula certification.
As I had mentioned. I was over due. Sweet boy wasn’t much of a mover. He liked to cuddle you fro
m the inside. To this day, a year and a half later, his love language is touch. He would stick his bum out in the womb just so you would pat it. Again, something he finds funnily comforting while going to sleep. I loved being pregnant, and he loved hogging his mother. I felt like I would be pregnant forever. The doctor’s visit’s came more frequently. I had turned down cervical check until my 40th week. It was across the boards 0. The day I had gone in my Dr. hadn’t liked my blood pressure, so he wanted me to come in again. This was the again.
My birth plan was simple: delayed clamping/ immediate skin to skin/ natural childbirth/ delayed vaccinations
As it would turn out, you can have all the plans in the world, but sometimes your Dr. decides for you. I had my bp checked, and it was 130’s then it was 150. They had left me alone for a moment. With one nurse in particular she had always documented a high BP. His other nurse, however it was always normal. I assumed the high bp nurse either didn’t know how to check a bp or my energy just wasn’t fond of hers. Either way the Dr. came in, and said “So where would you like to deliver?”
It hadn’t hit me what he really meant. Leave it to pregnancy brain or denial. I was torn between hospitals. One was nicer than the other, but the other had killer food. While I expressed my debate he said “Well I also have another patient delivering at x tonight, but I can go with their or.” That’s when it hit me. Wait… You mean delivery today?
I was in complete denial. Ultimately I had settled to deliver at the same hospital as his other patient. I mean, come on. Food. On our way home I was so upset. I made my husband search high and low for a blood pressure machine. If my blood pressure was normal, I would go home, call my doctor, and tell him I wasn’t coming in. That’s how important a natural birth was to me. After all my research, & knowing that almost 50% of birth end in cesareans. I knew every medical intervention I introduced would possibly affect my baby; increasing my risk. I didn’t find a blood pressure machine. My husband and I ate Wendy’s on the way to the hospital. We told absolutely no one our plans. After we got registered I met my nurse.
I had brought my “Thank you” bags for the nurses just in case I was staying, but I had no intention of giving them out until I knew for a fact I was staying. I had it premeditated that this nurse would check my blood pressure, it would be normal, and I would be going home. I went as far as to tell her that as sweetly and ignorantly as possible. Why did I not hire a doula? She checked my blood pressure, and it was 165/7. Well poop on a platter. I have to stay. I guess I should begrudgingly hand this lady a “Thank you” bag, because we were about to make friends for the evening.
She started my pitocin around 4:30pm.
I was restricted from walking the halls due to my blood pressure, but I was allowed a medicine ball. Let me tell you. I bounced, swirled, and moved on that thing like I was running a damn marathon. Take away walking from me. Hmpf. I’m going to move this baby out. I won’t get an epidural. You’re not making me immobile. I am an escalator on the down mode, mam.
My doctor would come in and ask if I wanted my water broken. Sir, you may have taken my right to a natural birth away, but you cannot have my waters. Each time he would come in, and get a little more impatient through his bedside smile. His nurse would come and check on me. I’m contracting a lot. It’s not taking my breath away. It certainly is no ski trip, but I’m in the zone. This seems to displease her with my ease on pitocin, so she kept upping my dose. Bring it on, mam.
I was allowed liquids during my labor. That beef broth was the
most sensual and satisfying relief this whole labor. I’m not sure if I moaned with a contraction or the satisfaction of some sort of fuel for this birth. By now it was nearing 11pm. The doctor came in, and expressed that if he did not break my water, I might have a very long night ahead of me. By this time it was his 5th time in. I had given in. It took him several times to try to break it. This birth was becoming less than I had planned. I knew cervical checks, and him breaking my water increased me and our son for risk of infection.
Holy water main break. That was the oddest sensation ever. It was like a warmth awkward bath. Holy Wonder Woman, contraction! It felt like the first of Wonder Woman had wrapped around my pelvic bone, and she was going to try to hulk smash me to pieces. I did my best to release that low pain filled moan. I’ve heard those high ones make the pain worse. I had faked trips to the bathroom just so I could walk off some of this pain. Breath. Just breath. The contractions were back to back. Thank you, nurse for my hulk level of pitocin. Forget the ball. Let’s concentrate on breathing. I was finding my rhythm on coming to grips with this new pain. Then they come in “Do you want an epidural?” I was about to decline when they finished, “Because we have another patient going in for a cesarean, and if you don’t get one now you might not be able to have one.”
Suddenly fear creeped over me. No, seriously. Why didn’t I hire, a doula? That fear took away my power, and I contemplated for a moment. It was like a warning. Had they never told me that, and just took the lady in for her operation, I could of dealt with it. Instead, I doubted myself, and begrudgingly accepted. I had completely face planted my natural birth plan. I ended up getting a resident anesthesiologist. I don’t think she put in my epidural right because my numb went numb, I still fell contractions just not as severe, and I wanted to rip my skin off my chest. It didn’t matter because about 30 minutes afterwards, I had the urge to push.
1! 2! 3! 4! 5! 6! 7! 8! 9! 10! My husband hollered enthusiastically. I whispered in mid push. “Please stop yelling at me…”
He was actually the best, most supportive husband ever. Who could blame his enthusiasm?
Before I knew it I was on my final push. I didn’t know it was my final. I just remember thinking that I am so tired that if I have to push one more time, I will get up, and walk out. Here it came. The final push. I wasn’t kidding. It was the most out of body experience. I watched the little girl in my head get out of bed, and walk out the door. A new lioness took over me, and I found the strength to fish that push. He was here. 3:02 am.
They rested him on my chest. I made sure to tell him that he was so loved, and so wanted as his first words outside of the womb. Then they wisked him away. They didn’t give him a chance to breathe. He started crying before they finished taking him away from me. Before I could protest his chord was cut. Then my arms were empty. My baby, and husband beside me… Somewhere. I felt victorious, and defeated at the same time. The last two most important things were taken from me. It didn’t stop me from singing “Happy Birthday” to him once I got to hold him, but I felt like something was taken from me.
At the end of the day, I had gotten my baby boy. Unfortunately he had sepsis. I couldn’t tell you how he got it, but I didn’t have a diet that would have put me at risk. I didn’t have GBS. I do know I broke my major rules of cervical checks, and water breaking. He ended up having jaundice, and fought low birth weight his first day of life. I had him taken away from me more than I had him given to me my first day.
I had ended up tearing an artery that left everything soaked in blood. The doctor had to come back, and find out what the issue was, and that’s when he found the torn artery.
Once people had found out that Giddy as born, you couldn’t keep them away. I so desperately missed bonding with him that first day. It woke an animal inside me that didn’t want to share him the slightest when I got home several days later. I couldn’t sand the smell of other people on him, and it would prompt me to change his clothes as soon as they left the room. I had never experienced such animalistic instincts.
I hope that you found some humor in this piece, but mostly I’m hoping to find healing. Ultimately every birth story is different. How did yours differ? Did you share similar emotions?